Big East It Is For Max Strus

By Roy & Harv Schmidt

April 22, 2016

11:00 A.M. CST

Make no mistake about it--Max Strus had always wanted to play for DePaul, a desire that can be traced back to his early years at Stagg High School in Palos Hills, IL.  The problem was that when he was recruited the first time around, the previous Blue Demons staff under Oliver Purnell did now show much interest.

This time things ended up being quite different.  So much so that it led to Strus committing to DePaul and head coach Dave Leitao after completing an official visit there this past weekend.  Strus made his decision public today via Twitter.

In the end, Strus chose the Blue Demons over Xavier and Butler.  He took official visits to both of those schools in addition to DePaul.  He had also received scholarship offers from Toledo and UIC.

Strus opted to transfer from Lewis University in February after being named a D2 All-American at the school this past season, with his primary reason being his desire to play at the highest college level possible.  He broke a school record by pouring in 52 points in a win over Northwood last November.  In that game, Strus took only 18 total shots, converting on 14 of them, including 12-14 3-point field goals.

The bottom line is that there were a number of factors that proved to be huge with respect to Strus' final decision.  One was location--the opportunity to play close to home in a high profile conference offering elite level competition.  Another is the fact that DePaul was able to reap the benefit Strus' family having strong ties to the university.  That is because his mother--Debbie Brinkman Strus--played basketball and volleyball at DePaul from 1977-1981 and is a member of the DePaul Athletics Hall Of Fame.

And finally, there is no question that Strus fills a need at DePaul and will see immediate playing time.  One of the primary recruiting needs of Leitao and his staff has been to find a quality shooter and Strus is definitely all that and more.  That is because he is a deadly sniper from 3-point range in addition to having outstanding athleticism and considerable toughness.  Strus will be plugged in at the 2-guard spot from day one and should prove to be a valuable contributor.

Along with Leitao, Associate Coach Rick Carter also deserves tons of credit for leading DePaul's charge for Strus' services.  Both Leitao and Carter did a great job of targeting Strus and letting him know that he was a top priority who they will be counting on heavily beginning next season.

Per NCAA rules, Strus will have to sit out a year and will be eligible at the beginning of the 2017-18 season.  DePaul currently has four recruits as members of their 2016 class.    

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